#1in10Challenge – Day 9

Injuries are a natural occurrence when it comes to many types of seizures.

Education about this is key as people who know or think they know seizure first aid may expect there to be no injuries if the first aid is administered correctly. They may even blame themselves for doing something wrong if an injury is acquired.

Another area where education is key is with doctors.

While they are under obligation to report domestic abuse where they believe they see it, they have to be aware that multiple injuries and trips to the emergency department are normal for people living with epilepsy.

I once broke my shoulder from a seizure. Okay I broke it more than once but on this instance it was different.

I was refused care until my mum left the room.

The doctor took my shirt off, dealing great pain to me.

She started grilling me and insisting my mum was abusing me no matter how much I dismissed her comments.

I know she couldn’t see any further evidence of abuse on my torso because there was no abuse.

She had me so distressed that I screamed at her to get out while in crocodile tears.

She left the room, leaving the curtain wide open and me unable to get my shirt back on because of the pain of the broken shoulder. She left me, a minor at the time, half naked for everyone to see in a public hospital.

All it would’ve taken is one quick squizz of my chart to see that I’m epileptic and my injuries would’ve made sense especially when paired with no further evidence of abuse and my defence. But she pushed and pushed and ignored my diagnosis as though it didn’t exist and now I’m left with traumatic memory that comes forward every time I have to visit the emergency department.

We have epilepsy. We hurt and we break. That’s part of the diagnosis. People need to be aware of that so they know it’s not their fault and so they don’t traumatise more patients. So that we get the support and treatment that we need.

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